War of the Rebellion: Serial 044 Page 0491 Chapter XXXIX. THE GETTYSBURG CAMPAIGN.

Search Civil War Official Records

No. 477 Report of Brig. General J. B. Gordon, C. S. Army, commanding brigade.

HEADQUARTERS GORDON'S BRIGADE, August 10, 1863.

Major: I have the honor to report that my brigade began the march with Early's division from Hamilton's Crossing on June 4 last. Halting at Cupeper Court-House two days, on the night of the 12th, after a most exhausting march of 17 miles in about six hours, we reached Front Royal. I was ordered to move on the pike leading to Winchester at 3 a. m. June 13. Fording both branches of the Shenandoah, we marched a to point on the Staunton pike about 3. 1/2 miles from Winchester, when, as ordered by Major-General Early, I moved to the left of this road, and formed line of battle 3 miles southwest of the town. About 4 o'clock in the afternoon, I deployed a line of skirmishers, and moved forward to the attack, holding two regiments (the Thirty -first Georgia) in reserve. After advancing several hundred yards, I found it necessary to bring into line, a portion of which he was immediately driven. A battery which I had hoped to captured was rapidly withdrawn. In this charge, which was executed with spirit and unchecked at any point, my brigade lost 75 men, including some efficient officers. On the 14th, detachments from this brigade were engaged in skirmishing with the enemy in front of the town and fort. In accordance with orders from Major-General Early, received on the night of the 14th, I began to move my brigade upon the fort a daylight the following morning. I soon discovered that the fort was evacuated, and, sending a detachment to occupy it and take possession of the garrison flag, I sent an officer to communicate with the major-general, and moved as rapidly as possible in the direction of the firing, distinctly heard, on the Martinsburg pike. My brigade reached the point where a portion of Johnon's division engaged the retreating enemy only in time to assist in collecting horses and prisoners. Crossing the Potomac at Shepherdstown on June 22, we marched through Boonsborough, Md., to Gettysburg, Pa. Before reaching this place, my brigade was detached by Major-General Early from the division, and ordered on a different road, with a battalion of cavalry, under the command of Lieutenant-Colonel [E. V.]White. In front of Gettysburg, a regiment of Pennsylvania militia was charged and routed by this cavalry battalion. I was here ordered to move on the direct pike to the city of York. Before entering this place, the mayor and a deputation of citizens were sent out by the city instructions from Major-General Early, I moved directly through, having sent in front of the brigade a provost guard to occupy the city and take down the Federal flag left flying over the principal street. We moved by the direct pike to Wrightsville, on the Susquehanna. At this point I found a body of Pennsylvania militia nearly equal in